World Bank approves over $1.6b for flood-affected Sindh

In a major boost the recovery and rehabilitation process, the World Bank approved an amount of $1.692 billion for the flood-affected people in Sindh.

The approval from the World Bank Board of Directors came Thursday which covers a total of five projects – three for rehabilitation, housing and restoration of crop production for vulnerable communities and the remaining two to support health services for mothers and children.

Najy Benhassine, World Bank Country Director for Pakistan, noted that Sindh was the province worst-affected by the 2022 floods, causing huge damage to the housing, health, and agriculture sectors as well as people’s livelihoods.

The Sindh Flood Emergency Rehabilitation Project ($500 million) will help rehabilitate damaged infrastructure, provide short-term livelihood opportunities, and strengthen government capacity to respond to disasters.

It will help restore and improve critical irrigation and flood protection infrastructure, water supply schemes, roads, and related infrastructure. At least 2 million people — approximately 50 percent of whom are women—in the most flood-affected districts will benefit from the restoration and the resilient reconstruction of critical infrastructure.

A community-level cash-for-work program will provide short-term income support to approximately 100,000 households. This will include semi-skilled and unskilled labor and will support livestock restocking for affected smallholder livestock farmers.

The World Bank also says that the Sindh Floods Emergency Housing Reconstruction Project ($500 million) will support owner-driven and multi-hazard resilient reconstruction of core housing units. A housing subsidy will provide reconstruction and restoration grants for 350,000 housing units (almost 20 percent of the total housing rehabilitation needs for Sindh).

Cash grants will be provided for houses with structural damage to partially finance reconstruction or restoration. In addition, basic rainwater harvesting systems and twin pit latrines will be provided to improve access to water and sanitation.

The Sindh Water and Agriculture Transformation Project ($292 million) will increase agricultural water productivity, improve integrated water resources management, and restore crop production by flood-affected farmers. More than 385,000 households (approximately 1.9 million people) are expected to benefit from the project.

As an immediate response to the floods, the project will provide cash transfers to approximately 300,000 flood-affected farming households to help restore crop production through the purchase of seeds, fertilizer, and other critical inputs. On the medium term around 70,000 households will benefit from improved irrigation services and agricultural support that will help boost farming income. An estimated 14,000 households will receive direct financial benefits from the pilot smart subsidy schemes targeting small- and medium-sized farmers.

The Sindh Strengthening Social Protection Delivery System Project ($200 million) will strengthen the provincial social protection delivery system and enhance access to and utilization of mother and child health services. It supports alignment and connectivity with the Federal National Database Registration Authority and will provide conditional cash transfers (CCTs) to 1.3 million mothers and their children to support improved maternal and child health outcomes, particularly in the wake of service disruption after the floods.

Similarly, the Sindh Integrated Health and Population Project ($200 million) will help improve both the quality and utilization of basic reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health and nutrition services. It will also help in rehabilitation and reconstruction of health infrastructure that was damaged in the floods, disrupting the delivery of these services. The project will improve access to quality healthcare services for, the population of the selected Government Dispensaries in remote and peri-urban areas especially women, girls, and children, and in the flood-affected settlements in Sindh.

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